Project to cut knife crime in Lincolnshire

Lincolnshire Police: Project Think Knife v.1

A new project will put young people through an “almost real life scenario” around the dangers of knife crime as part of plans to reduce serious violence in Lincolnshire.

Lincolnshire Police is looking to use the former custody facilities at Sleaford Police Station as part of “Project Think Sharp”, which aims to raise awareness of what happens to people carrying knives.

Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner Marc Jones told the Lincolnshire Police and Crime Panel on Friday that the force had taken the opportunity to move forward quickly with the plans.

Speaking after the meeting he said: “It’s using the facilities to be able to put a programme together which we’ll be able to take people to to create almost a real-life scenario around the dangers of knife crime.

“It’s really to bring that real-life awareness to young people about what happens if you’re carrying a knife, whether its for “your own protection” (it almost always isn’t) or its part of other illegal activities – whatever it is it will end badly.

“The chances of you being involved in a serious incident, both as a victim or perpetrator, go up so much when you carry a knife, so we want to bring that to life for young people.”

He noted, however that knife crime statistics for the county were “mercifully low”, but that he still wanted to reverse them.

A bid to the PCC submitted in April this year said the total cost of the project would be £39,900.

It said the project would be using the tragic murder of Cleethorpes school pupil Luke Walmsley – the first pupil to be killed on school grounds in the UK in 2003 – and would work closely with his parents.

At the time, Lincolnshire Police’s knife-crime related Operation Raptor had seized more than 100 weapons in response to incidents or with amnesty bins since its launch in October 2019.

Elsewhere in the meeting, councillors also discussed how built up areas such as Skegness, Gainsborough and Lincoln had been identified as having the highest levels of violence, victims and perpetrators.

They also discussed the fear of crime in Boston, with Mr Jones telling members it was “just as legitimate a thing to tackle as crime itself”.